Strictly speaking, not a gemstone at all, but formed from fossilised tree resin. Amber has long been appreciated for its natural beauty and distinctive hues. According to myth, when the son of Helios died, his sisters’ tears formed the origin of amber.
In the Far East, amber is considered to contain the soul of the tiger, whereas early Christians believed it signified the presence of the Lord. In Ancient Egypt amber was often enclosed in the casket of a loved one to ensure the body remained whole. It seems that Amber is considered to protect the complete self, and early physicians believed in its healing powers for use against headache, heart problems, arthritis and a wide range of other ailments.
Usually thought of as a dark golden hue, Amber can actually be found in a variety of shades from milky-white, red-orange, green, black and (very rarely) violet. Due to the process which forms the Amber from the liquid sap starting point of millions of years past, it can have various textures contained within, including air bubbles and even insects.